Exhibition at the Detroit Institute of Arts explores Van Gogh’s artistic origins

Exhibition at the Detroit Institute of Arts explores Van Gogh's artistic origins

Exhibition at the Detroit Institute of Arts explores Van Gogh’s artistic origins

Anton Mauve — Going to Pasture — 1870–80Leon-Augustin Lhermitte — Harvest — 1886

From 28 March 2022 to 30 January 2023, the Detroit Institute of Arts presents “Van Gogh’s Artistic Roots: The Hague School and French Realism”, an exhibition focusing on the artists who influenced Vincent van Gogh’s training as a painter.

Images: Anton Mauve, “Going to Pasture”, ca. 1870s-80s; oil on canvas. Detroit Institute of Arts. ·· Léon-Augustin Lhermitte, “The Harvest”, ca. 1886; oil on canvas. Detroit Institute of Arts.

How will it be with my work a year hence? Well, Mauve understands all this and he will give me as much technical advice as he can, — that which fills my head and my heart must be expressed in drawing or pictures.Vincent van Gogh, 1881

As a prologue to the exhibition “Van Gogh in America”, which the Detroit Institute of Arts plans to open in October, this exhibition of “Van Gogh without Van Gogh” presents a selection of works by Dutch and French artists who played a fundamental role in the artistic development of what was to become one of the great figures of Post-Impressionism, to the extent that some of them came to know the now famous Dutch artist personally.

Among them all, Van Gogh was particularly interested in the artists known under the common name of the “Hague School”, who in turn had been influenced by the advances of the painters of the Barbizon School, one of the clear antecedents of Impressionism thanks to their interest in plein air painting. It is not difficult to recognise the influence of artists such as Anton Mauve (1838–1888) or Jozef Israëls (1824–1911) in Van Gogh’s early works, before the artist’s arrival in Paris, where contact with the Impressionists and, above all, with Japanese art, would transform his artistic style forever.

The influence of Jean-François Millet (1814–1875), the great painter of the had-working, even tragic life of the French peasants, would extend beyond Van Gogh’s youth, as evidenced by the many paintings based on works by Millet that Van Gogh painted even in the last years of his life. #2022 #theartwolf #VincentVanGogh

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